With most of its effects derived not...
With most of its effects derived not from Alfred Hitchcock but his imitators, Final Analysis (NBC Sunday at 8:30 p.m.) is a misfired 1992 thriller starring Richard Gere as a psychiatrist treating disturbed patient Uma Thurman. Gere ends up passionately and ludicrously involved with her older sister (Kim Basinger).
Although its “Mission: Impossible” plot is awfully familiar, the good-spirited 1992 caper Sneakers (ABC Monday at 8:30 p.m.) succeeds with its playful script and the casual charm of its star performances. Robert Redford, Sidney Poitier, Dan Aykroyd, River Phoenix and David Strathairn play renegade masters of high-tech derring-do; they have to outwit the bad guys in a heist and get the golden gizmo. Clever, likable and savvy enough not to take itself too seriously.
In the 1994 Iron Will (ABC Saturday at 9 p.m.), one of the most Disneyesque of Disney movies in years, a teen-ager (Mackenzie Austin) embarks on a grueling dog-sled race in 1917. From Winnipeg, Canada, to St. Paul, Minn., he is pitted against landscape and human adversaries. Even with pat delineations and the outcome nearly guaranteed, this 1994 production is an exciting, heart-tugging movie, crafted with a story-propelling surety and some moments of pure cinematic grace.
KCET has lined up a Liam Neeson Saturday-night double feature: Lamb (9 p.m.), a familiar 1985 drama in which Neeson is effective as an idealistic teacher-priest concerned with a troubled, maltreated pupil (Colin Gregg). In Ethan Frome (10:50 p.m.), the 1993 film from Edith Wharton’s rapturously tragic love story, Neeson is a New Englander (Neeson) falling for the distant cousin (Patricia Arquette) of his embittered, hypochondriac wife (Joan Allen). It opts for dogged realism instead of Wharton’s stark, dark moodiness. As a result, you watch these people suffer without much empathy.